Category News

Trump administration sued over Hawaii’s cauliflower coral

Cauliflower Coral in Hawaii under attack from global warming

The Center for Biological Diversity sued the Trump administration Thursday for failing to protect cauliflower coral around the Hawaiian Islands, the agency said in a news release. The bushy, shallow-water species has been devastated by ocean warming triggered by human-caused climate change.

A strong marine heat wave is now hitting Hawaii’s coral reefs hard, and researchers predict massive coral bleaching and death, the released stated. Cauliflower coral coverage around Hawaii declined by 36% from 1999-2012, and current conditions are expected to worsen that decline.

“Cauliflower coral is like the canary in the coal mine of our warming oceans. Marine life around Hawaii will suffer without bold actions to protect coral reefs,” said Maxx Phillips, the center’s Hawaii director...

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Climate change: Big lifestyle changes are the only answer

The UK government must tell the public small, easy changes will not be enough to tackle climate change, warn experts.

Researchers from Imperial College London say we must eat less meat and dairy, swap cars for bikes, take fewer flights, and ditch gas boilers at home.

The report, seen by BBC Panorama, has been prepared for the Committee on Climate Change, which advises ministers how to cut the UK’s carbon footprint.

It says an upheaval in our lifestyles is the only way to meet targets.

The government has passed a law obliging the country to cut carbon emissions to net zero by 2050.

It is “going further and faster than any other developed nation to protect the planet for future generations”, a government spokesperson told BBC Panorama. “If we can go faster, we will.”

But the new report warns...

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Revealed: Google made large contributions to climate change deniers

Google has made “substantial” contributions to some of the most notorious climate deniers in Washington despite its insistence that it supports political action on the climate crisis. Among hundreds of groups the company has listed on its website as beneficiaries of its political giving are more than a dozen organisations that have campaigned against climate legislation, questioned the need for action, or actively sought to roll back Obama-era environmental protections.

The list includes the Competitive Enterprise Institute (CEI), a conservative policy group that was instrumental in convincing the Trump administration to abandon the Paris agreement and has criticised the White House for not dismantling more environmental rules.

Read full story here

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Turtles swim to uncertain future

Only one in 1,000 of the tiny loggerhead turtle hatchlings will survive

Freed from its eggshell by a volunteer, the tiny turtle hatchling clambers across a pebble-strewn sandy Greek beach in a race to the sea, the start of a hazardous journey that only one in 1,000 will survive. Kira Schirrmacher, 22, donning black gloves to gently ease the newborn loggerhead turtle on its way, grins at suggestions that she’s a kind of “midwife”.

“Yes, I do that all day,” says the German social sciences student, of her role.

She’s one of several volunteers monitoring the beaches of Kyparissia Bay, the Mediterranean’s largest nesting ground for the loggerhead, whose scientific name is Caretta caretta.

Tourism, and good fortune all weigh on the future of the loggerhead population, which the International Union for Conservation of Nature lists as vulnerable.

Even ...

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Good Fish Guide

The Marine Conservation Society has released their Good Fish Guide 2019 to help Brits shop more sustainably when it comes to fish and seafood. With over-fishing, climate change and habitat loss causing many fish stocks to decline, it’s essential that we choose the right fish when doing our food shops to make sure we are not adding to the problem.

According to recent studies by MCS, 40% of assessed fish stocks in the waters around the UK are currently over-exploited from fishing. This means the region is set to fall short of many healthy sea targets next year.

When it comes to searching for sustainable seafood, it can often be a challenge knowing where to start. Some of the things to remember include…

  • Trying something different
  • Buy local, seasonal fish
  • Find a local fishmonger where you ca...
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Solution to climate emergency: Conserve biodiversity

Coral island

Haribon Foundation stood in solidarity with millions of people across the planet at the recent Global Climate Strike to demand immediate and concrete actions from every individual, especially the decision-makers, to provide solutions to the worsening climate emergency. As the words of 16-year-old Greta Thunberg resoundingly urges, all sectors should “act as if our house is on fire.”

Climate change is not an issue separate from biodiversity loss, as one inevitably affects the other.

For instance, the destruction, degradation and loss of forests over the past decades have dramatically increased the amount carbon dioxide in the atmosphere, thereby amplifying the greenhouse gas effect.

This phenomenon has led to increased global temperature and heat waves...

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Polarstern icebreaker begins year-long Arctic drift

RV Polarstern (left), aided by the Russian icebreaker Akademik Fedorov, has found the right floe

German Research Vessel Polarstern has found a location to begin its year-long drift in Arctic sea-ice. The ship, which will head the North Pole’s biggest scientific expedition, will settle next to a thick ice floe on the Siberian side of the ocean basin. The precise location is 85 degrees north and 137 degrees east.

Hundreds of investigators will use it as a base from which to probe the impacts of climate change at the top of the world.

“After a brief but intensive search, we’ve found our home for the months to come,” said expedition leader Prof Markus Rex, from the Alfred Wegener Institute (AWI).

“It may not be the perfect floe but it’s the best one in this part of the Arctic and offers better working conditions than we could have expected after a warm Arctic summer.”

RV Polarstern set ...

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Ocean Cleaning Device Succeeds in Removing Plastic for the First Time

Plastic clean up operation to clear plastic from the oceans

An enormous floating device designed by Dutch scientists for the non-profit Ocean Cleanup successfully captured and removed plastic from the Great Pacific Garbage Patch, the company announced Wednesday, as CNN reported.

Ocean Cleanup has been hard at work on creating a device to attack the plastic waste crisis for seven years, by creating a device that captures plastic in its fold like a giant arm, according to Business Insider. The company announced that it was able to capture and hold debris ranging from large cartons, crates and abandoned fishing gear — or “ghosts nets,” which are a scourge to marine life — to microplastics that are as small as one millimeter, according to an Ocean Cleanup press release.

“Today, I am very proud to share with you that we are now catching plastics,” O...

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Avoid North Sea cod to sustain fish stocks

Fish and Chip dinner in newspaper

Consumers are being urged to steer clear of North Sea cod and wild Atlantic salmon – and eat more herring, plaice and hake – in a fresh attempt to alleviate pressure on threatened stocks. The Marine Conservation Society (MCS) will publish its updated 2019 Good Fish Guide this week, setting out which is the most sustainable seafood and what to avoid in order to help safeguardat-risk species in UK waters.

Cod from the North Sea has been awarded a red rating this year – moving back on to the society’s fish to avoid list – while UK sea-caught seabass has been removed from that list after stocks recovered.

Last week the Marine Stewardship Council announced that it was suspending its “blue tick” certification of North Sea cod after a dramatic decline in the population, which means it ...

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Island reveals rising tide of plastic waste

Inaccessible Island in the South Atlantic

A remote island in the southern Atlantic Ocean has helped reveal the scale of the problem of plastic waste facing our seas. Some 75% of bottles washed ashore on Inaccessible Island, in the South Atlantic, were found to be from Asia – with most made in China. Researchers said most of the bottles had been made recently, suggesting they had been discarded by ships.

An estimated 12.7 million tonnes of plastic end up in our oceans each year. But this figure just covers land-based sources.

The team from South Africa and Canada, writing in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS), said that it had been assumed that most of the debris found at sea was coming from the land.

However, the scientists said the evidence suggested otherwise.

“When we were [on the island, called Inace...

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